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Birding the Salton Sea - Red Bluff Marina, California
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Salton Sea

Birding the Salton Sea
Red Bluff Marina campground


Red Bluff Marina and campground is an odd place partially left in the dust of history. Originally, the campground was located on a highpoint of land out in the Salton Sea and the marina provided boat launch facilities. As water levels dropped, the area was left high and dry. Even so, the campground trees provide some of the only tall trees in the region, and shallow marshes along the access road can be good for ducks and waders. The edge of the Salton Sea can be accessed from dirt roads southwest of the campground.

Birding the Salton Sea
Merlin in the tall trees


The Salton Sea is located in the low deserts of southeastern California. Access from the north is via Interstate 10, and access from the south is from Interstate 8.

Red Bluff Marina is the southeast corner of the Salton Sea between the town of Niland and Calipatria. From Highway 111, which runs along the east side of the Salton Sea, watch for signs and turn west on Sinclair Road toward the refuge headquarters. Before getting to the refuge, turn north onto Garst Road. Follow the road north and then west to the campground area.

Link to Area Map.

Birding the Salton Sea
Birds in shallow marsh along the access road


None for non-campers. The cities of Brawley and El Centro to the south provide everything. Smaller towns provide essential services. The lake level is too low for the marina, but the campground still has shade.


Day-use except for camping.



Birding the Salton Sea
Shallow marsh
Birding the Salton Sea
Road access to the Salton Sea
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Happy birding! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 140107

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